Members of the force named in the Guerin report aren't happy. I wonder if they're prepared to answer questions about the disappearance of a computer containing evidence of child abuse from their station?
One member named in the Guerin Report, Garda Oscar, believes RTÉ Prime Time was perceived as fact talked about by experts. Garda Oscar said, “There were no experts to take our side simply because they had not yet seen the report and could not comment upon it – yet other commentators were freely encouraged to speculate upon the allegations made.”
Another member named in the report, Garda Tango, said, “Everyone knows the one side of the story and have made up their minds. The media just took the one side too. I think it’s ridiculous. The media have jumped on the bandwagon so they are not going to admit they were wrong. People believe what they see on Prime Time.”http://www.gardareview.ie/index.php/abandoned-outpost/The Guerin Report conclusion includes testimony of the men and women who worked with Sergeant McCabe in the years before the complaints were made – immediate supervisors who held him in ‘high regard’.Talking about his former sergeant-in-charge, Garda Tango said, “He himself pointed out there was no inspector here and the superintendent came for a couple of months and moved on.
“He (McCabe) was in charge here. He ran the station. He was the main man here; it was his job to make sure these files were good and that investigations were carried out right and that files were submitted on time.
“I am obviously angry. No one knows what went on here except for the members in Bailieboro Garda Station – and him. How come only one person thinks this was a badly run spot? He was the man in charge.
“No one has asked for my side of the story. I provided the file within a few days. The report does not accurately portray my memory of the events – it is all his interpretation of it. It’s all one sided but no one seems to care.”
The report makes allegations against members in the station party dating from 2007, since then many of the members in the station party have been transferred out, but a core remains. The report ‘anonymized’ gardaí using the phonetic alphabet; this cipher has been broken by colleagues and is spreading countrywide through the garda grapevine. Four months on and still no one has asked the members in Bailieboro district for their side of the story. They want to talk. They want a full investigation where all the facts are analysed and the truth comes out.
Garda Tango said, “We have never been interviewed or asked for our side of the story. No one has looked into the man’s [Sergeant McCabe] behaviour with gardaí when he was here. No one cares about that. They are just looking into what he has to say and the allegations he has made; we get no say. Nothing.
“It’s as if no one cares. No one cares about the truth. I would absolutely like to tell my side of the story.”
Garda Oscar said, “The Guerin Report is frustrating to all of us because it is one-sided; the gardaí given phonetic names were not interviewed to give their side of the story. It is flawed as a result.
“Any garda investigation I have been involved in, however minor, requires you to interview both parties – if you didn’t the case would immediately be thrown out of court.
“Everyone in the district is frustrated; how can it be fair that people are named, identifiably too, and not given any chance to put their side of the story? We didn’t turn down interviews – we weren’t asked. I didn’t even know I featured in the investigation until the report was published; and it was critical of me.”
Garda Mike said, “While our personal names were not mentioned in the report it is easy to ascertain the gardaí involved in each case, by other gardaí and certain members of the public. We were not informed that we would be so easily identifiable.
“This more frustrating as we have transferred stations and our current management may judge us in a negative way and look unfavourably upon us for investigations or potential promotion. They clearly know the identity of Garda Mike. I feel that we are guilty by association to this report and its, essentially prejudicial, outcomes.”